Now under Warner control and hoping to ride the crest of the Evel Knievel toy craze (even though it was near it's end), Atari decided to release a home version of Stunt Cycle. Originally codenamed "Stunt Debbie" during it's design, Atari Stunt Cycle (Model C-450) was released in 1977. Unfortunately 1977 also happened to be the year known for the death of the "dedicated" consoles, as the Fairchild Video Entertainment system had been released the year before. Known as the first programmable cartridge based console, it caused the "pong" market to collapse as the many pong knockoff manufacturers saw "the end" coming. Subsequently, they dumped their merchandise at clearance prices in an effort to get out with at least some money - unknowingly sparking what is known as the "first great video game crash". Atari didn't help Stunt Cycle's chances by releasing no less than 6 new pong consoles that year AND debuted it's own programmable console - the now famous Atari Video Computer System (2600).


Sears Motocross

As with all Atari dedicated consoles, Sears released it's own Atari manufactured version of the Stunt Cycle that same year. Called the Sears Telegames Motocross (Model 99748), Sears tried to remedy the flood problem by combining it's Ultra Sports IV console (equivalent to Atari's Pong Sports Doubles) console with Stunt Cycle. The result was a hybrid system that allowed you to plug in 4 pong paddles and play 16 different pong games along with the normal Stunt Cycle games.

Unfortunately, the plan didn't help Sears either. Besides the dedicated console crash, Evel and his toys were on the way out by the late 1970's due to his decreasing popularity after a series of failed stunts (anyone remember the rocket jump?).

Fast forward to now. Unlike the original Atari, Evel is still going strong, even after being told he had two months to live (due to hepatitis C ) back in 1998. Evel more recently announced that he is coming out of retirement at the ripe old age of 64. Knievel is planning a 100m jump on a superpowered motorcycle near the Californian Nevada border for early next year 2003 in an attempt to bring his name back from obscurity. Atari Stunt Cycle however, is still a favorite among collectors to this day.







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